The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, has suggested that relief programmes focus on sustainability and be aimed at integrating beneficiaries into the main recognized economic activities.
Nandi-Ndaitwah remarked this during the Mayoral Relief Fund gala dinner, where the Tsumeb Municipality raised close to N$400,000 in pledges.
Many towns have set up Mayoral Relief Funds, deeming that these add value to the management of municipalities, particularly in taking care of vulnerable people.
However, Nandi-Ndaitwah says relief programmes should enable beneficiaries to take care of themselves.
"You see, if you have a few people in the community who are economically empowered, those few people will suffer because the majority will always be knocking at their door. And then the hatred will come because that empowered minority will not be able to respond positively, and they will start discriminating, but if you empower everyone economically, then the few that are economically empowered will share the burden, and in the process, the few will also be raised up."
She also urged the councils to develop implementable programs by drawing inspiration from successful initiatives in other countries, which they can use as benchmarks.
Nandi-Ndaitwah emphasized the need to establish a government plan to oversee the operations of municipal funds to ensure that benefits are distributed fairly and without only circulating around the same people.
Dr. Stanley Kanyemba is the Patron of the Tsumeb Mayoral Relief Fund.
"One hopes that this is the beginning of responsible citizenry when we start looking after each other. One cannot underestimate how far looking after each other goes."
Tsumeb Mayor Mathews Hangula says the pledges will be put to good use.
"Whether it's a five-dollar donation or 40 cents, it will make a meaningful contribution or change the lives of the Namibian people. Tsumeb has discovered a president, and we want to discover other talents too."
GPT Transnamib Concrete Sleepers donated concrete sleepers worth 35 thousand dollars.
Domar Fishing Company donated fish worth more than N$110,000 to benefit 2,500 households.
Dundee Precious Metals donated N$30,000 towards the fund.
The Mayoral Relief Fund gala dinner was hosted under the theme "Restoring the Dignity of the Tsumeb Community".